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Thanks for joining the Three Martini Lunch today. Once again, Rob Long of National Review and Ricochet is sitting in for Jim. Today, we celebrate the resignation of socialist Bolivian dictator Evo Morales and notice how very sad the mainstream media and far left politicians are that Morales is no longer in power. They also […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Move Along Folks, Nothing to See Here

 

Our Lady of Guadalupe in Buckingham has again had its pro-life display vandalized.

In Central Bucks County, where yard signs assure that “Hate Has No Home Here,” acts of hatred are perpetrated on the people of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a Catholic parish in Buckingham Township. It’s been happening for years.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Different? Not So Much.

 

My friend is a “different” race than I am. I’m considered “white” and he is considered “black.” Aside from the fact that we are really both just shades of the same color which I call Human, are we really different?

He has two eyes, I have two eyes.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. My Failed Attempt at Being an Atheist

 

At an emotionally flat part of my life, I had the idea of being an atheist. I’m a scientist of sorts, and so I really ought to take the scientific view of everything, I thought. I’d been raised as a protestant (Methodist) but hadn’t been observant for years, and I no longer thought of it as an important part of my life. Looking back on it now I’m not certain how sincere I was about this. It doesn’t seem like I ever really got into being an atheist like some of them do. Things kept getting in the way.

For one thing, many atheists are ignorant of the religion they criticize. They think about religion a lot, especially Christianity, but most of what they think they know about it is wrong. I realize that there are plenty of thoughtful atheists who harbor no ill will against believers and respect their beliefs. The trouble was I kept running into the other kind.

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The headline in the latest Pew Research Center story is “In U.S., Decline of Christianity continues at rapid pace: An update on America’s changing religious landscape.” It seems that since the 1990s, Christianity has been in decline. Some, like Catholic New York Times columnist Ross Douthat, argue that these numbers reflect the fact that the […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Dialogue on Faith and Reason

 

Phil and Sophy–that’s Phil and Sophy–are talking about faith and reason in this ongoing YouTube playlist. They’re leaving out a lot of Aquinas and some other guys. But they’re doing a great job covering topics like empiricism, the Verification Criterion of Meaning, Hume, Kant, William James, Augustine, Alvin Plantinga, C. S. Lewis, and more. Here’s the first bit:

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Spiritual But Not Religious

 

I’m tired of people describing their spiritual lives as “spiritual but not religious.” I have little respect for people who wear the spiritual label to show how enlightened they are, and how they have freed themselves from the archaic practices of religion.

I know there are many people who have had painful experiences with religion and thus have chosen this narrow journey of spirituality. Many people have had difficult, emotionally wounding experiences with organized religion. They have been betrayed by a spiritual leader or were taught as a child a fearful or hateful version of religions. They were expected to follow rituals they didn’t understand or resented. All in all, early experiences left them empty, without filling their hearts and souls. Even my own mother felt rejected; she had wanted to join a synagogue, but we had limited funds. She left hurt and embarrassed after visiting the synagogue, when they told her they couldn’t adjust the fees for her poor financial situation.

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The Shia-Sunni split in Islam is hard to understand from the non-Muslim’s perspective. After all, Islam in general is hard for most Westerners to understand, including me. So, to understand the differing viewpoints within Islam is even harder. But what is going on now in Islam? It looks like the Shia are winning. Iran is […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Why We Fight, We’ll Not Be Driven Away

 

Catholics who still practice the Faith are not supposed to know there ever was an “old rite” or that there is a “new rite” at all. The entire project of the Revolution at this stage is to deny there ever was such a thing as the Old Faith.

Anyway, all this is why they are as furious as a bag of feral cats that there are still Traditionalists, and that the traddie movement is gaining ground. That lot was supposed to have died out or been driven out, and the fact that there are new ones, people like me who never knew the old rite in the wild, and the families now having twelve kids and going to the Missa Cantata, and all the homeschooling and whatnot… Combine that with the internet’s ability to let everyone know what’s really happening, and plenty of beautiful pictures besides, and it must be making them absolutely apoplectic.

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If only this debate had included a Muslim it would have covered even more theological territory. But this is a timely debate. Was Jesus the Jewish messiah? Is there a God “out there” somewhere? The atheist says he isn’t convinced. So here is the debate between a Christian, a Jew and an Atheist. More

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Richard Dawkins has a new book out, guaranteed to continue the debate going on in the western world, and even the entire world, over the value of religious belief. Some think that religious belief is essential to healthy societies and happy lives. There is also the debate over whether a particular religious claim is, in […]

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Member Post

 

Note: The Jewish season of Torah reading had just started a couple of weeks back. I decided to follow along with Christianity’s elder brother in the faith to learn and write my thoughts. I was hesitant to post as I have no idea if I can keep this up for 52 weeks. Nevertheless, if I […]

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In light of the pope’s high regard for Greta Thunberg and Pachamama, here’s a collection of placards that I’ve created in an appropriate font. This is my favorite, to give a flavor of the selections. More

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Stand Together Against the Enemy

 

 John said to Him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we tried to prevent him because he was not following us.” 39 But Jesus said, “Do not hinder him, for there is no one who will perform a miracle in My name, and be able soon afterward to speak evil of Me. 40 For he who is not against us is for us.

Mark 9:38-40, NASB

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About a year ago while doing a little online research on the Jewish New Testament scholar Pinchas Lapide, I discovered a book entitled “Gottsuche und Sinnfrage”, which title translates into “The Search for God and the Question of Meaning”. It is a transcript of a recording of a conversation that Lapide and Viktor Frankl had […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Pope, Pachamama, Politics, and the Periphery: Everything Is Connected

 

In a previous post, I characterized the currently ongoing Amazonian Synod as “one of the more bizarre (and potentially very destructive) events of the Francis pontificate.” Little did I know of the horrors that were about to occur when I wrote that.

On Friday, October 4, to get the festivities rolling, a “tree-planting” ceremony took place in the Vatican Gardens to consecrate the synod to St. Francis of Assisi. But what we got was a pagan ritual centered around the now infamous Pachamama.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Pope Speaks Out (No, Not That Pope)

 

I’ve listened to some of the Democrat Presidential debates and I had no idea there were that many people that were concerned with what I should eat, how I should travel, what I should own, and my medical care. There’s more to add to the list so rather than list everything I’ll just say – I never knew I was so inept in living my unsupervised personal life, much less how that ignorance was oppressing my neighbors. I not only was oppressing my neighbors I was oppressing an entire nation with my selfish lifestyle.

In this age of unexamined ideas where history begins with the start of the next 24-hour news cycle, state-sanctioned looting is nothing new, the Catholic Church has already wrestled with this issue. There were Catholics that advocated Distributism, which was no more than Socialism. Some called it the Catholic Third Way of Economics. The Magisterium never advocated this Third Way because it was seen as no more than theft.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Weep, Seattle Catholics

 

The headline reads: “Planned Parenthood Decision Sparks Seattle U Protest.” In typical fashion, you can’t really tell what the story is about, except that it has to do with Planned Parenthood, Seattle University, and protests (a frequent pastime in Seattle). It’s probably not what you think, though.

Seattle University used to be a private, Jesuit University. Over the years, the school has strayed farther and farther from being really Catholic, and I’m pretty sure the majority of students there are no longer Catholic. The decision in question, taken by the President of the college, was not to include Planned Parenthood on an online list of medical-care resources. About 1,000 students, faculty, and alumni were protesting this decision! You know what color Seattle is (as blue or maybe red/communist as can be), and as I have pointed out before, progressives are progressive first, and everything else later, including Catholic. With Abortion as the Holy Sacrament of the Progressive movement, any action to discourage it is taken as an affront by the population.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. How Lame Is Our Awesome God?

 

“When He rolls up His sleeves / He ain’t just puttin’ on the Ritz” must be one of the least promising ways to begin a worship song ever. Nobody rolling up their sleeves is “puttin’ on the Ritz.” The rolled-up sleeve-position used for manual labor is the opposite of the sleeve-position used for an old-fashioned fancy night out. And yet, that’s how Richard Mullins’s best-known song, Awesome God opens. Mullins himself considered Awesome God something of a failure, remarking, “the thing I like about Awesome God is that it’s one of the worst-written songs that I ever wrote; it’s just poorly crafted.” And yet it’s a song many of us remember fondly. Why?

To be fair, the lyrics get better from there: “There is THUNder in His footsteps / And lightnin’ in His fists.” Although not by much. Awesome God alternates patter in the verses with an expansive chorus, and the patter is hardly scintillating prose, much less verse. (“Eden” rhymes with “be believin’” — really?) The patter does, though, address themes often left out of “Jesus is my boyfriend”-style worship songs. God as Judge. Sin and its wages. God as God not just of happy, shiny, fluffy things, but also of the storm. And, when the song is sung at proper tempo (no slower than Mullins himself performed it), the rapid-fire, syncopated sixteenth-note patter creates an effect that surpasses its individual words. Especially when the worship leader delivers the patter in a half-snarled, half-whispered mutter, as if he’s letting you in on the secret of something dangerous — which he is: Aslan’s not safe, after all, just good. Notice I called the worship leader he. That’s important. Awesome God is made for a masculine musical delivery, and the difference between liking the song and hating it can simply be the difference between having learned it as masculine and driven, or crooning and wimpy.

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